17 July 2007

International Guerilla Marketing Project

I'm about to send a number of autographed copies of my Simplicity Cycle book to some Rogue Operators in DC, New York City, Montreal, Las Vegas, LA and the UK. Their mission - deliver the books to a suitable location (bookstore, cafe, train station, etc) and leave them to be discovered by some lucky reader.

The books will have stickers on the front saying FREE. Inside will be a note that says something along these lines:

This book, The Simplicity Cycle, is free. Please don't try to pay for it - you'll only confuse the clerk. There is no barcode, no price, and it's not in the store's inventory. It really is free. All I ask is that you mention it on your blog. If you don' t have a blog, give it to someone who does (after you read it, of course). I hope you enjoy it. - Dan

I realize some humorless shopkeepers might object, although I can't think of a good reason why they should. If they do, I'll just feel bad for them, because they are probably not very happy people. However, shopkeepers of the more creative, lively kind will recognize this as a good thing for them.

Here's how I see it: If I owned a bookstore, wouldn't it be great if my shop had a reputation for being the kind of place where authors occasionally plant free, autographed copies of their books... where readers could expect to occasionally find a free surprise (which costs the shop nothing... and costs the customer nothing...)?

If I had a bookstore, I'd beg authors to sneak into my shop and stealthily leave behind free copies of their books. Partly because I think it's cool, and partly because I know it would bring people into my store, looking over the shelves, and quite possibly, finding things they would like to pay for (to go along with the occasional freebie). I just might do something like this with all my other books!

I can't wait to see what happens...
(Mucho Thanks to Andy Nulman for suggesting the idea!)


Deb said...

Keep us posted on how it goes ~ I think it's a very cool idea!

Steve Sherlock said...

Dan, if you want some help in the Boston area, let me know.